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Beetle makes Manila comeback
Publication Date : 04-04-2014
Ayala Auto Holdings Corp., a unit of conglomerate Ayala Corp., has brought back to the Philippines the iconic “Beetle” to add to the growing line-up of Volkswagen vehicles being made available in the country.
On the sidelines of the Beetle launch Wednesday night, John Philip S. Orbeta, chairman and president of Ayala Auto Holdings, said the third generation Volkswagen icon would be made available in two variants with prices ranging from 1.59 million pesos (US$35,000) for the Beetle 1.2 TSI to as much as 1.84 million pesos ($40,900) for the Beetle 1.4 TSI.
A shipment is expected to arrive in two months’ time to serve the initial demand, as there have been at least 20 pre-orders of the Beetle as of Wednesday night.
“Our target market would be those who want to look at a fun, alternative car… we hope we can attract the younger generation now because many of our parents and ourselves were part of the old Beetle (generation). We hope to rekindle that,” Orbeta added.
Orbeta however declined to cite the number of Beetle units slated to arrive within the next two months, nor did he disclose targets for the company as a whole as he admitted that “supply is still erratic… not stable.”
There are remaining reservations that have yet to be served, he added.
“We have a soft target. But we’re now doing market testing… we’ll see what will sell then we’ll ramp up volumes depending on that. We hope to be able to hit a few hundred,” Orbeta said.
Despite supply problems, Ayala Auto Holdings is set to put up two more company-owned dealerships within the year. It currently has one dealership at the Bonifacio Global City.
“The time to come back to the Philippines is now. The Asean market is the next frontier for Volkswagen in the Asia Pacific Region,” Weiming Soh, executive vice president of Volkswagen AG said earlier.